Should I use Logic Apps or Microsoft Flow for automation?

A colleague showed me an incredible enterprise-level Logic app that he recently created for a client in the construction industry.

He knew I was working on Flow, so he made an effort to show me the ropes from a different angle.

And this made me think, how do you choose between Microsoft’s Flow and Azure Logic Apps? Which is the better solution?

The correct answer depends entirely on your goals and requirements, and it may involve using both solutions.

As one blogger put it, Flow and Logic Apps should be regarded as siblings, not twins.

Flow is built on a Logic Apps foundation and uses the same workflow designer and the same connectors. Many people begin with Flow for prototyping and switch to Logic Apps for scaling and delivering automation across the organization.

The right solution largely depends on the level of complexity required, so here are a few diagnostic questions to point you in the right direction.

  1. Who’s the User?
    Is the solution mostly being used by office workers, business users or SharePoint administrators? If so, Flow is the way to go.
    Are IT pros, integrators and developers running the show? Cue Logic Apps.

2. Is this more of a self-service, simple integration or an advanced integration?
Sensibly, the simpler solutions are great for Flow, but more complex scenarios work better for Logic Apps.

3. Which Design tools do you need?
Flow offers in-browser and mobile app UI only.
Logic Apps offers in-browser in addition to Visual Studio and Code views.

4. What kind of Application Lifecycle Management do you need?
Flow is designed and tested in non-production enviroments and promoted to production upon readiness.
With Logic Apps, the ALM is more extensive using Azure Resource Management for DevOps, source control, testing, support, automation and management.

5. What kind of administration experience and security do you want/need?
Flow’s environments, tracking and Data Loss Prevention policies are managed in Flow. Flow uses Office 365 Security and Compliance audit logs and allows for encryption.

For Logic Apps, security is managed through Azure Security, Security center, via audit logs and other measures within the Azure Portal.
Resource groups, connections, access management and logging for Logic Apps are all managed through Azure’s Portal.

This is a quick a dirty way to assess which solution is right for you!

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